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Business software intelligence marketplace G2 (formerly known as G2 Crowd) has raised $157 million in a series D round of funding.
Founded out of Chicago in 2012, G2 is probably better known as a sort of “Yelp for business software,” serving as a public-facing portal to garner insights, feedback, and reviews spanning thousands of popular applications. This includes the ability to compare-and-contrast similar software to help reach a buying decision.
According to G2 cofounder and CEO Godard Abel, a recent survey it carried out revealed that 94% of enterprise software buyers “don’t trust vendor sales and marketing people,” a statistic that could probably apply to just about any software vertical across the business and consumer spheres.
“G2 brings trust and transparency to the enterprise software buying process,” Abel told VentureBeat. “Software buyers now rely on trusted peer reviews for everything they shop for as consumers — this is increasingly true for B2B software purchases.”
Today, G2 claims more than 1.3 million reviews and ratings, with 60 million enterprise software buyers visiting its platform each year.
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On the other side, G2 enables paying companies such as Adobe, Autodesk, HubSpot, Salesforce, and Zoom to manage their online product profile and glean insights such as buyer intent, which helps them identify potential customers and target them with tailored reachout campaigns at the right time. This is enabled by myriad integrations such as LinkedIn, Salesforce, HubSpot, Terminus, Salesloft, and Outreach
Internally, companies can also use G2 Track — a result of its 2018 Siftery acquisition — to monitor and manage their SaaS spend, with granular analytics detailing how each piece of software is used by employees and by departments, enabling businesses to cut their spend on underused products.
It also allows them to track all their various vendor contracts in a centralized hub, which may also help identify duplicate SaaS subscriptions for the same product taken out by different teams.
Prior to now, G2 had raised around $100 million, and its latest cash injection was led by Permira’s growth fund, with participation from HubSpot Ventures, Salesforce Ventures, Accel, Emergence, and IVP. Additionally, the company also confirmed that it is now valued at more than $1 billion.
While online reviews have existed since the advent of the web, large businesses looking for software insights and recommendations to power their buying decisions have not always been served in the same way as consumers researching the best restaurants or hotels have been.
Traditionally, businesses have often had to pay to access third-party research and reports (e.g. from Gartner), something that G2 helps circumvent with real-time reviews that can be filtered and segmented by company size. This means that a potential enterprise buyer can choose to view ratings purely from other enterprise buyers — this is important, because companies can have entirely different experiences based on their needs and use-cases.
“Unlike analyst models, G2’s platform provides real-time data sourced from actual, verified software users,” Abel said. “There is no need to purchase subscriptions for tens of thousands of dollars to access research, or to pay thousands of dollars for access to analysts.”
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